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EULOGY: Chelele will be missed but her music lives on

By JEREMIAH KIPLANG’AT

The mysterious death of renowned singer Diana Chemutai Musila marks the end of the journey for a fast-rising local musician whose life took a tumultuous turn a few years ago but whose songs continued to woo and warm the hearts of many.

The curtain fell on the singer popularly known as Chelele on Saturday as her 2015 hit song, Osupchon Ngwony, was riding high in the local Kalenjin airwaves.

Her fans were also enjoying her reinvention after her life took a dip in 2012 when she was arrested with her husband and charged for murder.

In the song released last year, she seemed to talk about her troubled life when she referred to an estranged lover who had gone away after she gave everything for him. She also subtly asks for help saying she was no longer in her right state of mind.

In the latest album she also, for the first time, included a gospel track, Kamangunet, in which she sings how she believes God was going to do good things in her life. She said her enemies were celebrating her downfall but she was looking ahead for a better life.

Chelele shot to fame five years ago through her popular songs. In one of her songs, Maiywek, that was a hit in 2014, she criticised men who are addicted to alcohol.

ON HIGH DEMAND

Among the Kalenjin secular female singers she ranked top and her fame rivaled that of renowned gospel singer Emmy Kosgei.

The singer from Bomet County was undoubtedly the natural successor to the one famous Kalenjin Sisters whose popularity has dwindled over the last decade.

Most of her videos featured women gyrating their hips, an additional ingredient that seems to have won her more fans.

Her songs were on high demand on Kalenjin stations, Kass, Chamgei and Kitwek.

However, despite the fame, her life took a tragic turn in 2012 when she was arrested with her husband Eric Makau, an administration police officer was arrested and charged with the murder of Eldoret surveyor Eliud Yego in an alleged love triangle.

Last October, she was admitted in hospital in Nakuru after attempting suicide.

A LEGEND

On Saturday, upon learning of her death, the stations dedicated the whole day to her songs and allowed her fans to pay tribute to her.

Many of those who called in said she was a legend that would be remembered for a long time.

Elgeyo-Marakwet Senator Kipchumba Murkomen, who confessed to being her fan, said it was unfortunate she had died when her new songs were gaining popularity. He asked the police to speed up investigations into the circumstances surrounding her death.

“It is unfortunate that the life of a young, promising and talented person has been cut short by bloody hands! Even though I have not had a personal encounter with Chelele, I have always found her music to be informative, educative, entertaining and a true reflection of our society,” said Mr Murkomen via Facebook.

“The lyrics are truly moving, the voice wantonly sweet, the diction carefully chosen and her body movements matching the words. Why would one kill such a person? Who will naturally sing for us Mpenzi Wangu and Osupchongwony? We have lost a person who could contribute a lot to the country’s economy. To the police, please expedite the investigations into this heinous murder and make arrests,” he added.

Her other popular songs are Igaigayan, Meus Kwondo, Binti Osama, and Wrong Number.